“Sometimes, it’s just plain hard not to sympathize with Scrooge,” a friend of mine said recently. My friend certainly was not having the best of times. Her mother was trying to arrange the Christmas dinner so that a certain son-in-law (whom she did not like) could not attend. “There is just no way this is going to end well,” my friend moaned. “I’d have more fun lying in bed alone in my apartment for two days.”
Certainly, the season does have its low points. I overheard a man say to his wife in Target today: “If you ask them what they want and they don’t tell you, then as far I’m concerned, they get zilch.” He was not a happy camper. I myself was on my third store looking for something that I’m pretty sure isn’t even made any more, but is on my father’s list this year. And I’m determined to find it because my dad rarely has anything on his list.
In fact, I would be hard-pressed to find anyone who seemed to have the least bit of holiday spirit this morning. The Monday before Christmas starts the countdown for those who put off buying presents or put off facing those unpleasant family arrangements.
If you’re not dealing with a true sadness (death, illness, divorce, etc.), then give your inner Scrooge a little time to rant and rave. Look at the long lines and the surly clerks with a jaded eye for a few minutes. But then remember this: how truly lucky we are to have such fortunate lives that we think waiting in line is a true imposition. Maybe our families are truly eccentric, even annoying, but remember that we still have families to visit. And we’re not guaranteed that from day-to-day.
The holidays simply don’t bring out the best in everyone. And not everyone can fake jolliness. But we can all be thankful for the people and things we do have.
Happy holidays, everyone!